Finding Light In The Dark - A letter for those who need it
Mental health is something that most of us live with day to day. I do myself and I know a handful of others who also do. If you find that you are someone who is struggling I just want to say I'm sorry and you are not alone. According to MIND 1 in 4 of us will suffer with mental health issues, 1 in 6 reporting anxiety and depression and staggering 20.6 of us will struggle with suicidal thoughts. It sucks, real bloody bad. No matter what you find yourself struggling with the first thing you need to remember is you didn't choose this. I'm saying this because you most likely feel guilty for being ill, right? I need you to know that this feeling of guilt is normal for people who suffer but it's wrong. What have you got to feel guilty about? Your ill, you can't help it. You wouldn't feel guilty for having a cold or a broken leg so why is mental health so different? Lose the guilt for feeling the way you feel and for not being able to do the things you once could. Guilt isn't helping anyone.
You might find that your emotions are all other the place and one moment your fine and the next your in a deep state of anger, sadness and overall numb. These emotions suck and they really do bring everything down a level. No matter the goodness you have in life you can't see it or it doesn't feel like it means anything at that moment. It's a hard time but the thing is your still here and fighting and that really does show how strong and brave you are.
The range of mental disorders differ between each but a lot bring the same symptoms and feelings. Sometimes you might not sleep because your mind is raising far to fast and other times all you do is sleep because the only feeling you feel is tiredness and when you wake the rest of the day you long for sleep. You might find yourself in a deep depression and the only thing you can do during the day is go to the toilet. Simple daily tasks such as eating, drinking, talking to people and working become far to hard and you find yourself in the same PJ'S that you have been wearing for days. The truth with all of these emotions is they are normal and you are not alone. If all you can do is sleep then do it. If you haven't had changed your clothes don't worry. If you can't talk to people or think straight, wait for it to pass. These things can make you feel worthless and like you are failing at life but the truth is you are doing your best, even if you are doing nothing! These feelings are stages and they will always pass. Sometimes they do comeback and you might always battle with them throughout your life but know that it will pass and what you are doing is the best you can.
Mental health is hard, I understand that. When your living a life that you don't want it can make you feel like it's not worth living. The only thing I can say back to that is it is worth living. It might not feel that way right now but in a matter of months it will feel differently. It could just be at this moment you are not getting the right help needed from medication, therapy or your friends/family. It could be that the disorder you suffer with causes these symptoms or you are just at a lower point now. If you do feel like giving up remind yourself of how far you have come and that there is so much help out there for you, just ask! You can talk to people, your GP, Charities and if you feel in danger the doctors and nurses in A&E can help more than you know. You are not alone with these thoughts in two ways, a lot of people have them and a lot of people want to help. I know it's not as simple as this and I know that what you are feeling is very real to you but please keep fighting.
I understand that living with mental health is hard. I get that it makes you feel these strange emotions. I understand it makes you act out of character and I feel for the emotions you live with. You just have to keep fighting as hard as you can. Do things that can help. If that means you need to take medication then take it. It doesn't make you less of a person or mean you have failed, it means you are looking after yourself. Going for therapy can be a daunting time but once you get to know your therapist and have a plan you will feel in more control than you ever have. If you can't work or do things to used to don't feel guilty and don't be mean to yourself. So many of us have been there and at this moment your health is more important than anything else.
You are not alone in your struggles and you are doing so well! Life carries on around those who suffer but you are building the strongest foundations for yourself. Your scars and your bruises are proof of the battle you have faced and beaten. You are more than your illness and so much more than the mistakes it's lead you to make. You were and never will be to blame for being ill. If anyone thinks you are then screw them, they are not worth your time if they cannot understand. Fight each day the hardest you can and I promise one day it will be better. You have lived in the real world which isn't sugar coated or pretty and you know how hard life really is. Think of the wisdom you will have and the people you will help. This is a moment in history. It doesn't matter if it takes you ten or twenty years to feel better the point is you will, no matter what you think right now.